© Henrik Matzen

The journey is the destination – hikes along the River Schlei

Hiking Collection by
OSTSEEfjordSCHLEI

Over 26 miles (42 kilometers) long and 2.5 miles (four kilometers) wide at its largest spot, between Eckernförde and Flensburg, an estuary of the Baltic Sea extends into Schleswig-Holstein: the Baltic Fjord Schlei. On these twelve hikes, we lead you through the gently undulating landscape around the Schlei. Walking through quiet forests, blossoming meadows and along the gentle coastline, you quickly understand why the region has been recognized as a nature park.

However, the Schlei doesn’t just offer ancient cultural landscapes and beautiful riverbanks, the history of the settlements on the shore of the Schlei dates back centuries. The most famous settlement is the Viking town of Haithabu, which was an important trading center in the early Middle Ages. You can relive the history in the extensive museum as well as the small museum village. In addition, if you are interested in culture, the small fishing villages and the pretty old town of Schleswig are great for hiking.

In summer, countless beaches along the Schlei, small lakes and, of course, the Baltic Sea offer ideal rest spots during your hikes — so don't forget your swimwear! In the small villages and towns around the Schlei you will find numerous comfortable accommodation options to get a good night’s sleep before you start hiking. These can also be perfectly combined with the numerous leisure ships that cruise the fjord.

Let yourself be inspired by our tours and enjoy the hiking trails in the Schlei Nature Park — exactly as the motto goes “the journey is the destination”.

On The Map

Tours & Highlights

  • Intermediate
    02:39
    6.36 mi
    2.4 mph
    200 ft
    200 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Noore - from the Danish word "Nor" - are waters that are completely separated from the sea except for a small access. Accordingly, the coastal lakes have a special blend of fresh and salt water - a unique habitat for waterfowl. The most beautiful Noore around the Schlei are the Haddebyer Noor and the Selker Noor. On this tour, you will walk around beautiful lakeside paths around both Noore - and of course you should not miss a visit to the Viking village of Haithabu.From the starting point Niederselk you walk counterclockwise along the Nooren - sometimes very close to the water and sometimes a few meters from the shore through small forests and wide reed belts. Very worthwhile is a detour to the Noor bridge, which leads over the narrow connection of the two waters, because from the top you have a beautiful view over the vast landscape. On the north shore, the Haddebyer Noor meets the loop and your gaze wanders over the wide water.A few steps later you reach Haddeby, where you can plan a comfortable break in the "Odins". Now you walk south to the Viking Museum Haithabu. Only a few minutes later, you can see the reconstructed village from the former wall of the Viking City - it is part of the museum and can also be visited. From here you follow our route back to the starting point of the hike.

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  • Intermediate
    03:22
    8.06 mi
    2.4 mph
    275 ft
    275 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The Danewerk - Danish Danevirke - is an ancient rampart on the former German-Danish border. For centuries, the Wall has been extended and expanded and today you can clearly see its traces in the vast landscape. On this round trip we lead you to the most impressive remnants of Danewerk. You can also complete your hike with a visit to the Danewerk Museum or the Viking village of Haithabu.Starting point of your hike is the small village Dannewerk. From here it is only a few steps to Waldemarsmauer. Under Danish king Waldemar, the wall was reinforced by a two-meter-wide brick wall, which was uncovered at this point. Shortly thereafter, it passes the Danewerk Museum and up to the broad mound.With beautiful views of the vast fields and meadows you walk past the Thyraburg - an old castle hill - and continue to Busdorf. Here you finally stand on the ancient ring wall of the famous Viking settlement Haithabu. A visit to the replica Viking village in the center of the ring is not only worthwhile for medieval fans. Afterwards you follow the wall back to the starting point of the hike.

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  • Intermediate
    02:03
    4.99 mi
    2.4 mph
    75 ft
    75 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The decline of Haithabu followed the rise of Schleswig to the northern European trading metropolis. Only in the High Middle Ages Schleswig was replaced by Lübeck and Flensburg - the loop was no longer navigable for the large merchant ships. We take you on this city tour through the city harbor, into the fishing settlement Holm, through the romantic old town and along the banks of the Schlei - including a first-class view of the city. The highlight is the ferry ride "Hein" from Haddeby to the city harbor.The starting point of your round trip is the city harbor. Here you can watch the hustle and bustle and stroll along the jetty. A little later, you stroll past old houses through the fishing settlement Holm and then along the Holmer Noor. The trail leads you across meadows in the old town of Schleswig.After you have walked through the old town, you cross the Schlei at the Gottofer dam and look at the impressive Schloss Gottorf. The road will eventually take you along the banks of the Schlei to the ferry pier in Haddeby. With the historic ferry "Hein" you then set back to the city harbor. The timetables can be found at hein-haddeby.de.

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  • Difficult
    05:50
    14.0 mi
    2.4 mph
    400 ft
    400 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Like the fjord Schlei itself, the Langsee was formed during the last ice age as a glacier gully. Our hike will take you through the beech forests on the shores of the lake and across the vast meadows and fields of the area. It also goes to the neighboring Idstedter See - if the tour with almost 23 kilometers is too long, you can simply skip the second lake. On warm summer days, you should definitely bring your swimwear, because at both lakes lure cozy bathing spots.The starting point of your round trip is on the edge of Süderfahrenstedt. From here you stroll to the lakeshore and in the shade of pines and beech trees along the water. In several places you can hop right into the cool water. On the east bank the Wellspranger Au flows into the lake and here the path leads you out onto wide meadows and fields.With a wonderful view you walk in a loop to Böklund - various restaurants invite you to take a break. No less idyllic you follow the route back to the Langsee and through beech forests on to the neighboring Idstedter See. The can be completely surrounded and several wooden bridges lead through the reed belt to the water. At the end, you stroll through the forest back to the starting point of the hike.

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  • Easy
    01:06
    2.63 mi
    2.4 mph
    75 ft
    75 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Beautiful paths, short distances, wonderful views and bizarre stories - this combination awaits you on our round trip around Ulsnis. On warm days, the small beach Hagab on the banks of the Schlei beckons.At the starting point of the tour you first learn the story of the giant of Ulsnis. He once lived on the banks of the Schlei. In a quarrel with his son, who lived on the opposite bank, both threw themselves with huge stones, until both mortally wounded fell to the ground. The old man plunged his head into the loop leaving behind the Gunnebyer Noor - on a map you can see the imprint of his head well. In memory of the giant today stands a statue in the village.From here you can wander across wide meadows to the shore of the Schlei. From Hagab beach, a hiking trail follows the reedy banks until the route heads back inland. On the way back to Ulsnis worth a visit to the Church of St. Wilhadi.

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  • Intermediate
    02:06
    5.08 mi
    2.4 mph
    125 ft
    100 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The village of Habernis is picturesquely situated directly on the Baltic Sea - and around it lure wide meadows, picturesque bogs and small woodland for long walks. On our route we will guide you on varied paths to the most beautiful places around Habernis.The hike starts right on the picturesque beach Norgaardholz - the perfect place for a dip in the water. Walk along the shore and head north. On barely traveled roads you follow the tour through fields to the coastline at Habernis. The pebble beach is wonderfully lonely and offers great views of the sea.Immediately afterwards, you will hike on wooden footbridges through a natural bog. Hobby botanists can discover a number of rare flowers in the lush wet meadows. After a rest on the benches at the Artesian spring Wolsroi it goes through small forest pieces back to the start of the circular walk.

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  • Intermediate
    01:14
    3.00 mi
    2.4 mph
    50 ft
    50 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Great for any fitness level. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The region around the Schlei enchants with wide landscapes - but next to that you should not neglect the coastline of the Baltic Sea. That's exactly what we have prepared this tour for you: Between the villages Hasselberg and Kronsgaard we lead you on this leisurely hike along the sea, through small enchanted woodland and across open meadows.The tour starts at the campsite Hasselberg and thus directly on the Baltic Sea beach. With a nice view of the waves, you head northwards until the Danish road branches off the beach promenade. You follow the quiet street on the edge of small fields and meadows. In a cozy loop you walk past corner mountain and Pugholz. After a small section of forest you finally reach Hasselberg, where you can finish your hike in the beach restaurant.

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  • Intermediate
    04:36
    11.3 mi
    2.5 mph
    125 ft
    125 ft
    Ferry
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels. The tour includes crossing by ferry.

    On this hike, you'll visit the two cozy harbor towns of Kappeln and Maasholm - and you're not just on foot. Instead you take the Schleiraddampfer from the port in Kappeln and chug with pleasure over the Schlei to Maasholm. From there you wander around the Wormshöfter Noor and on beautiful country lanes back to Kappeln.First, it's on the promenade through the fishing port and the marina of Kappeln - if you like to eat fresh fish, you can stock up here with provisions. After a look at the nostalgic bascule you jump onto the paddle steamer and glide leisurely over the loop to Maasholm. Timetables can be found at schleiraddampfer.de/fahrplan.html.Here you can admire the Aalstecher and the old Kahn places at the harbor, before you leave the small town and wander around the Wormshöfter Noor. On wide dirt roads we lead you past the Gut Buckhagen back to Kappeln.

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  • Easy
    01:17
    3.13 mi
    2.4 mph
    50 ft
    50 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    This leisurely walk will take you across wide rape fields to the Schleienge Rabelsund. In the thatched houses on the Schlei shore was until the 1960s, a cozy restaurant, but now there are cottages. Nevertheless, the tranquility and beauty of the place has not changed: At Rabelsund you sit on a bench in the shade of a gnarled tree and look out to the water.Your walk begins in the village of Rabel. From here you can stroll over dirt roads and hardly busy roads. Soon you will reach the shore of the Schlei, which presents itself here as a small cliff - so beautiful is the view of the opposite shore.You follow the coastal path to Rabelsund, where you can enjoy the beautiful view on the secluded bank. Back to Rabel you walk across wide fields, on which the rapeseed flowers sway back and forth in the summer.

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  • Intermediate
    04:15
    10.3 mi
    2.4 mph
    175 ft
    175 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    This hike promises particularly impressive views, because at Waabs towers over the Baltic Sea beach, a real, small cliffs on. The trail will take you along the coast for a few kilometers and over rapeseed fields and along small forests back to the starting point.Let's go on the edge of the village Langholz. From here the coastal path leads you directly up to the cliffs. At the top you wander across wide meadows, which abruptly break off to the sea - the view on the water is in any case great. After a few kilometers, the path swings inland and leads you around a large campsite around back to the water.Here you will find another cliff section, which you follow to the beach snack "fish turret". After a break you walk inland and over fields and at the edge of the forest back to Langholz.

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  • Intermediate
    03:46
    9.08 mi
    2.4 mph
    250 ft
    250 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The Baltic Sea fjord Schlei extends far into the interior and spreads between Weseby and Borgwedel once again correctly. Exactly this region is the goal of this nearly 15-kilometer day hike. From the Langsee near Weseby we lead you in a wide circle over gently undulating meadows and through quiet forests to the Schlei shore.Your round starts on the shores of Lake Langhe near Weseby. From there you follow a round Alleeweg to the nature reserve Bültsee - a bath place invites here to a cooling. Then it goes through the village Kosel northward until the Ornumer Weg branches off to the left. It then leads you across wide fields and meadows - wonderful views are guaranteed here.At Missunde you hit the loop. At its reedy shore you walk along and on the edge of the Missunder forest to Weseby. From here it is only a short distance to the starting point of the hike.

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  • Intermediate
    01:17
    3.08 mi
    2.4 mph
    100 ft
    100 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Great for any fitness level. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The municipality Fleckeby is located on the southern shore of the Schlei and is separated from the shore only by a small moorland: the Hirschholm Moor. On this tour you will walk through the moor on footbridges and quiet paths, stroll along the Schlei shore and pay a visit to the manor house Louisenlund. From there it goes on forest roads back to the starting point.Our route leads you right into the wet meadows and reed areas of the moor. After crossing the Große Hüttener Au on a narrow pedestrian bridge, you will reach the Schleiufer and thus the harbor of Fleckeby. With beautiful views of the water you continue hiking to Louisenlund.The old mansion was used from 1949 as a country school home and is now the seat of the prestigious elite boarding Louisenlund - accordingly, you can look at the immaculate building only from the outside. Pass the sports field of the boarding school and enter the forest. You pass the forest chapel Louisenlund and reach the starting point of the hike shortly afterwards.

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    12
  • Distance
    81.0 mi
  • Duration
    33:30 h
  • Elevation
    1,900 ft
The journey is the destination – hikes along the River Schlei
Hiking Collection by
OSTSEEfjordSCHLEI